r IWDUTRUCOTIBLE BOARDSI'. -". *' ". '. .- "
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LOJfDON. FPW.Fie '.. 'N c -D rFJE, ,F>-I.,
IT was nearly Frank's bedtime,
and though he thought he was
wide awake, the sandman had come ._
and had been throwing sand in his
eyes, until at last they shut quite
tight, and in a moment he was in
the Land of Nod. He found himself I -"-i
in a comfortable room, and he would
have thought it was his own nursery except for the
astonishing behaviour of his old wooden horse, which was kicking
with his hind legs and neighing loudly.
But listen; Dobbin is speaking. It is all very well," he cried,
between his neighs, I think I am very badly treated, for, like the
rest of the world, as soon as my master has a new friend he forsakes
his old one who has served him so faithfully. He takes sugar to
his sister's "new live pony in the stables every
i\:. morning. When I was new I never had
any sugar, and now that I am getting old
L and worn in his service I am left
jhi 'ere in this corner. Its
Sa big shame!" and Dobbin
I" a' kicked viciously.
These complaints of
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Dobbin surprised Frank, who, however, thought the poor old
wooden horse had some right on his side, and he bent his head
forward when Dobbin commenced speaking again, so as not to
lose any word of what he said.
"Once," continued Dobbin, "I used to be much better
treated; but that was when I was quite new. How well I remember
the happy day, when my young master took me on the top of
a tram to see the Cart-Horse Parade. How proud I felt; other
horses had to draw me then, and what a lot of notice was taken
of me by everybody on the tram. But even that day was spoilt
when we arrived home, for there in the nursery was a miller's
van, drawn by four high-stepping horses, and Frank's delight was
so great that he forgot all about me: in fact, he deserted me
entirely for them.
But I could tell Master Frank something he does not
know," added Dobbin. For it is his birthday, to-morrow, and I
heard someone say there is a rocklng-horse coming for him." Here,
Frank heard no more, for he was suddenly brought back from the
"Land of Nod" by hearing nurse say, "Come, Master Frank,
it is bedtime." Frank rose from the stool on which he had been
sitting, and slowly followed her to his bedroom, where, in a few
minutes, he forgot his strange dream in a happy sleep.
Next morning, what was his delight, on entering the nursery,
to see a beautiful rocking-horse, a present from his mother! He
now remembered Dobbin's story of the night before.
He examined the horse with great pleasure, and, when a
moment later Mother came into the nursery, he told her in
great excitement what Dobbin had said last night. But," he
added, '.'I don't mean to forsake dear old Dobbin any more,
though I do love this nice new rocking-horse.
His mother laughed, but Frank was as good as his word,
and after breakfast decided it would be great fun to harness up
Dobbin with another horse on to the rocking-horse and ride tandem.
Thus the morning passed happily away.
Frank, however, like many other small boys and girls, soon
forgot his good resolutions, and when on Christmas Day Father
Christmas brought him a bicycle horse, poor old Dobbin was
Perhaps if you paid a visit to a certain lumber-room in a
certain house, well known to the young gentleman of whom you
are now reading, you might still see in a dusty corner a dilapidated
wooden horse, answering to the name of Dobbin.
We cannot altogether blame Frank for his desertion of Dobbin,
for he was now growing quite a big boy, and was too old to
play with the little wooden horse.
When his next birthday came round, his father gave him
a beautiful little pony, and that very day he had his first riding
lesson, and his father promised him that, as soon as he could
ride well enough, he should follow the hounds. Frank was over-
joyed at the thought. He was extremely fond of
horses and anything connected with them, and
had been ever since he was quite a little
boy; the only toys he had ever .cared
for were those with horses. -
In- the evening, as they
sat in the twilight, Frank ;- '
would sometimes persuade .
his father to tell him ..
stories, but he always -
begged that they might be all
S ,, about horses.
'^ "' In this way Frank learned
that there were wild horses on the
"MM prairies; how they live together in
S ,herds like the buffaloes, and how
Sthe Indians hunt them and capture
Them by means of long ropes that
S are called lassoes, which they very
cleverly throw over the head of
the horse they wish to catch.
.-- .": These wild horses are very
easily frightened, and the Indians
have to be very cunning, leaning half off their horse so that it
may appear to be riderless. They can thus get quite close to
where the herd is grazing, who scarcely notice the new comer,
thinking it is only a wild horse like themselves. When the horse
is captured the Indians have to train it to carry men. At first it
is very difficult to manage; it rears and leaps and jumps, in order
to get rid of its strange burden.
Frank also learned about the many different kinds of horses
that there. are, and how, by years of careful training and usage
to one special kind of work, there are now several families of
horses very different to look at.
What a difference there is between the cart-horse, with his broad
shoulders and big shaggy legs, and the delicately bred hunter or
race-horse, is there not?
The Arabs are very fond of their horses, and treat them
as members of the family; they know all their habits and ways, and
love them very often more than they do their own children.
Arab horses are also very affectionate to their masters, and
are capable of being very highly trained. Horses of this
kind are taught to perform in circuses, and to fetch and carry
like dogs; besides which they have done many a noble deed
in saving their masters' lives.
Frank loved most of all to hear about fire-engine horses,
how they stand at their stalls, with their collars hanging just
above them, ready to be slipped on at a second's notice,
in case of a fire alarm. Have you ever seen a fire engine
dashing through the streets of a large town ? The firemen cry,
"Hi! Hi! Hi!" while the beautiful animals seem to strain every
nerve, as if they knew how much depended upon their speed ?
In all nations and at all times the horse has played an
important part in the affairs of the people.
When Alexander the Great was young, his father, who was
King. of Macedonia, promised his son to make him a present
of a horse named Bucephalus, if he could ride, him, for he was
a fine high-spirited animal, and as yet no one had been able to
control him. Many people had tried, but it had always resulted
in a fall. When Prince Alexander came forward, everyone
thought- he would fail as the others had done. But the Prince
had noticed beforehand that the horse, which was standing in
the sun, shied at its own shadow as it moved; he therefore turned
its head towards the sun, so that the shadow would fall behind
it, and thus succeeded in taming the horse, which he always
Frank did not always ride his pony. Some days, for a change,
he would walk, and let his little sister drive it in the cart,
with the children. Sometimes Frank went to see the four-in-hand
coaches arrive and depart from the old inn on the high road. I
think he would himself have liked to sit on the box and drive
those four beautiful horses, but. the passengers might not have
been equally pleased.
The first time I saw Frank, he was busy arranging and re-
arranging some horse soldiers on the nursery table, and he was
full of tales of the Military Tournament which his father had taken
him to see the day before.
"I am going to be a soldier in the Scots Greys, when I'm
a man," he cried, "and then I shall always be with horses."
.j -- -" .
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PLAYTIME TOY BOOKS. ,
Large deinl 41', ,:..rnj.li'll num ro, r'l, .uIt,.ur, l ,and pluniin '
pictuIps and boundl in attrihinvu vnrilll hl-, crr. Er, ''
Ui fori, -witlh thik volumele
1 THE HOME ALPHABET.
2 THE FARMYARD ALPHABET.
3 THE NURSERY-RHYME A B C.
4 THE OBJECT ALPHABET.
5 DICK WHITTINGTON. .- -. .-
*7 PUNCH AND JUDY.
9 A. APPLE PIE.
10 ALL ROUND THE CIRCUS.
*11 PUNCH AND JUDY
*12 FAVOURITE ANIMALS. ,
20 PUSS IN BOOTS. \
21 RED RIDING HOOD.. -. ,-'
22 NURSERY RHYMES." .
23 OLD MOTHER HUBBARD. i4 -
24 JACK AND JILL.
*25 PEEPS INTO ZOOLAND. '-
*26 PETS AT PLAY.
28 PUSSY'S HOLIDAY FUN. '-4
*33 PUZZLE BOOK OF TRADES.
*34 PUZZLE HOUSE WE LIVE IN.
35 NURSERY NUMBERS.. -g'
36 ONE AND ONE .RE TWO.
37 A. B. C. OF FUN AND FROLIC.
38 OUR FUNNY FRIENDS.
39 BOW WOW WOW.
41 OUR HORSES.
42 ALADDIN AND THE WONDERFUL LAMP. -
All the above except lb.-.li i. rke' aor, l ... i-.. kiL pt in
rock MOUNTED iON LINEN oilI IN 'I lI T'IHII: .
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